Sims 3 freezes and lags

As you all may know this is the one error that lot of people hate. Well, besides Windows crashing. First of all regardless what good system or bad PC system you have, you need to know this.

Sims 3 system renders/generates a huge amount of 3D at once. get it?  no?

Basically, ok you are cooking with your Sim Maria, but you are not the only Sim in the neighbouhood many Simmies are doing their daily activities in one go. So it’s ok for the game to freeze once in a while. What we are talking about constant freezing from second to second, from frame to frame.

First things first. Your PC specs. I have covered that in one section/post please refer to that here. And then to read on you need to know about custom content. Never heard about CC? click here

And you are ready to go!

System Requirements

Your system specifications covered. You install your drivers, and this issue still occurs. This freezing issue may occur even if you have 8GB RAM more than your game needs. Still keep on reading.

Lowering Your Display and Game Play

In the Sims 3 Menu you can lower the game 3D qualities and other rendering stuff. Reflection quality, Visual Effects, Lightning and Shadows and other elements can be lowered by sliding the diamond bar thing to the left. Lowering your game resolution ( Screen size) can be effective too, as it compresses the size of 3D. You can also try playing in windowed mode to see if it reduce the glitches.

Sims 3 menu

Custom Content

Custom content is usually located inside your Sims 3 Save folder. In the mods you got to see if the your mods and CC are compatible with the game. There’s a little clinch software for you to do that.  Sims 3 Dashboards allows you to automatically check if errors are present in your packages folder and may fix them.

After you open your S/W open it right click on the big white space. It gives you a menu, click open file location. Go to your Sims 3 directory,  and open.  It might stuck a bit and the loading bar below shows if your files are fully loaded. If the application crashed or not responded, you can try from the beginning and see.

Some mods crash with the game if you have the patch incompatibility, each mod is made with the creator using specific patches in their own games. Check your game version here. And see if it coincides with the patch required with the game.

Other Mods

Probably only the last thing you can do. Max your game play by other Mods.

Stuck Sims

Now actually why does Sims 3 freeze? Your neighborhood is big, and an ugly little simmie is stuck somewhere in an unknown place. This is called an unroutable sim. So the system pauses or focuses on this particular sim to get him to be routable again.


You are not the only person with vehicles, all the vehicles used by NPC and Sims can get stuck too.Pets and Radios may cause issues, and homeless? i’ve never seen that!

Now to the mods.

Overwatch – Overwatch is a game mod, that can automatically fix all issues related to stuck sims. After installing this. Start your game, go to the city hall, and new menu is called Nraas. Click it. Then click game commands, and a list will appear with either True or False. I keep everything true, so no glitches.

Errortrap – Another good one by Nrras, traps errors and stop them from invading your game.

No foot tapping for clear route – that weird two step simmies do when they get stuck, this mod prevents the foot tapping.


No matter how you hate it, if the above does not work you can try re-installing the game, backup the saves. And do a nice installation with fingers crossed.



  1. It’s OK for the game to freeze once in a while? Seriously?

    There are other games that process just as much information on your machine that do not freeze as frequently on such a varied assortment of platforms as The Sims 3. I’m a professional software developer, I have been for about 15 years and I’ve been Simming since Sim City, and I can tell you this sincerely: if I went to my clients and said “well, it’s complex software that I’ve written, it’s bound to break occasionally” I’d be out of work tomorrow. The game freezing is because the code does not handle errors as gracefully as it should, that is the only reason. If you have a machine that matches the minimum specs for the software then the software should run consistently to the minimum quality standard of play… it does not ever excuse crashes caused by ungracefully handled exceptions.

    Of course your software will throw exceptions when it gets complicated. Often times well developed software is supposed to use this mechanism to function properly! It’s how order is brought to input in an effort to give good output. What matters is what you do with those exceptions, those errors, not necessarily the steps taken prgromatically to avoid them altogether. Maxis doesn’t seem to bother much with either avoiding or handling them. I’ve played the Sims 3 on a very high end machine and have excellent game play but suffered just as many crashes as I get on my old laptops, all of which are lower spec but all above the minimum required.

    The fact that a third party modification designed to catch errors even exists is evidence enough to show the lackluster effort made by Maxis to make the game reliable. Why haven’t Maxis added something similar in a patch? I think I know: because it doesn’t matter to them at all as long as people keep buying the expansions, any more effort is wasted effort from their point of view. Sadly, they’re right, their approach makes sense for their business, but that doesn’t mean it’s a good approach for their users. Far from it.

  2. I just installed the Pets expansion, and it was fine before but as soon as I got it every second it doesn’t freeze and lag is a miracle. I will try out these tips and see if they’ll work. It looks good, and this looks like a website I will be going back to for more simmies information 🙂

  3. I just got the sims 3 base game I am very new at this but I love the sims but I created my household and it says to buy a home I click buy then when I’m done it says start playing and all that so when I click the check mark it says loading and the music stops and the game freezes and I have to restart my laptop it wont let me play and I’m getting really annoyed I don’t know how to fix it because it wont let me get passed that. please help me!

  4. I have played the sims since it originally came out, yet every so often I have a save that becomes unplayable. I played on one family for their entire epic life span with no problems, yet my new sim is freezing every 20-40 sim seconds it is rediculous. I am using a gaming PC that plays all new games on high graphics with no issues and yet this is freezing constantly! I can cope with the regular crashing I just make sure i save regularly but when it has become un playable i am not standing for it. I have tried so many solutions even changing the graphics has no effect its the game not the pc.

    • I agree with you- this is a game glitch, eventually as more expansions kick in- it gets hard for the system to hold all of them. The Graphics card is not usually the problem since it only asks for 128 MB worth 🙂

      There are rare instances where the Sims 3 gets stuck forever- there’s yet a no choice but to exit the game and restart it again. 😦

      Also this game needs more RAM.even a 4GB wouldn’t work with this. I’d recommend 8GB if you’re willing to play with all expansions.(but there are cases where 8GB users report freezing and stuff -_-

      • I have 8gb RAM and I am having trouble with lagging and freezing… it is quite annoying and I came here in hopes to fix it..

  5. as soon as I open the sims 3 its slow, lags, and freezes! is it because of my computer or do I need to reinstall it? I’m so confused because my old computer never done this.

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